Tag Archives: News

What’s Up With Lancashire and Mental Health Board Games?

In 2008, Carol Bristow, an NHS mental health professional, created a board game about mental health . Now health services at the Bolton Community and Voluntary Services have created a mental health board game called Upsy Downsy . ( source ) The game is based on Snakes and Ladders. Upsy Downsy was a brand used by Mattel for a 1969 line of toys and a show. No one has…

Democs: Democracy in a Serious Card Game

Democs Democs is a card-based planning and problem solving tool, where participants use cards to address important issues and try to come to consensus. Dozens of kits addressing global problems have been created [1]. Democs was created by the New Economics Foundation [3]. PlayDecide Democs has been adapted by the European Commision’s Facilitators’ Units Network for Debates (FUND) to create PlayDecide . Well, more appropriated …

Cool It, Environmental Disinformation From the UCS

Cool It! is a brainless game of take that! from the UCS (Union of Concerned Scientists). Pick cards, play the solutions on yourself until you’ve won, or play problems on others to slow them down. While they sensibly include more solution cards than problem cards so that the game will eventually terminate, I don’t know what kind of message it sends to kids that…

RIP Charles S. Roberts, Aileen Osofsky

Charles S. Roberts was arguably the founder of the modern war games, and indirectly the founder of role playing games and probably every other modern board game to some degree. His first games, Tactics and Tactics II, introduced the ubiquitous CRT, and his next game, Gettysburg, was probably the first simulation war game. He founded the company Avalon Hill to sell these …

A Picture Should Be Worth 1,000 Words

How good are you at doing two things at once, both of which require concentration? That’s what I thought! Few people are. And yet, we GMs often seem to expect our players to be able to do just that, and on a regular basis. We expect them to be able to take a verbal description of a scene or setting, integrate a…

What’s in a name?

I’ll admit it, naming non-player characters and places in role playing game is HARD! If you are not careful you’ll end up with names your players will make fun of for years to come. The noble and serious NPCs that will be the key to the plot will not be remembered for his generosity or secret knowledge, but for being called…

Miscellaneous Game News Roundup

According to some sources, miners trapped in Chile are not allowed competitive board games, for fear of raising tensions in their cramped conditions. ( source ) According to other sources, the government is planning to send them Dominoes and card games, which of course never raise tensions. ( source ) A Hong Kong furniture salesman has won the World Series of Mahjong . …

Q-Workshop Makes Amazing Dice and Promotional Videos

[via BoardGameNews ]

Ask The GMs: How to survive political games with paranoia and intrigue

Lilith Laing asks the GMs: “Recently I started playing in a Vampire: The Masquerade Old WOD game. Even after one session, it is probably the best game I have ever played in (or even run), but I have never played this sort of political game before. Do you, the GMs, have any tips for how to deal with political games like Masquerade, that is, the paranoia …

R.I.P. DM Rewards program

It appears that the DM rewards program is also being largely eliminated. There is a lot of uproar about the fact that the latest D&D reward is a single card for the Ravenloft board game, which turns out just to be the promo card that was given out at GenCon. I’m not sure who thought a card for the Ravenloft board game was an appropriate…

Ralph Lauren Games

Ralph Lauren makes a few luxury games, including the Hammond Chess set: Nickel and leather, with a modernist design. $1995. They also make a Checkers set ($295) and a Backgammon set ($695), both under the name Rowan. ( source , via , via , via )

A few minor changes to the blog’s appearance

You probably won’t notice but I’ve gotten rid of the Google AdSense advertisement block, along with the star ratings plug-in. My original intention with the AdSense block wasn’t to actually make any money but instead I was hoping it would actually yield interesting or useful contextual ads once in a while. Instead what it’s done (at least from what I’ve seen here …

Awards and English Game Magazines from Austria

Dagmar de Cassan at Spielen writes to tell me about some news items from Austria: Atlantis by Leo Colovini and published by Amigo won the Austrian Spiel Der Spiele. See the rest of the winners here . WIN The Games Journal has been running in German for 34 years. Starting with the August, 2010 issue, it’s also now available in English. The English issue, and several past German ones, are available…

BGG Adds Podcast Directory

BoardGameGeek has, for the first time, acknowledged that other board game sites exist, by adding a beta podcast directory . Each podcast includes a description, link to the feed, and the ability to listen to each episode directly on BGG. Each episode also has its own BGG entry. In other news, BGG has dropped the Geekdo approach (BoardGameGeek is now the official name of …

The Social Studies Teacher Who Designs Games

The Herald-Mail has a great writeup today about game designer John Poniske , a Social Studies teacher in Pennsylvania. You may recognize his name as we’ve covered some news about his game, King Philip’s War, before . Poniske feels historical wargames are a fantastic starting point for future research on a topic. “Finding out the minutiae of an event is a joy.” The article goes on to …

Board and Card Game News Roundup

I was away from blogging for a week (my father passed away), so I have a backlog of news posts to churn out. Here you go: Chess Bobby Fischer’s body was exhumed from his grave to prove that a 9 year old Philippines girl was not, in fact, his daughter. ( source ) Felony charges against Gregory Alexander, accused of breaking into …

School club update: 16 players!

Today was the first meeting of the after-school game program I’ve been running for the past seven years and we had quite a turn-out: 16 players, all of which were interested in playing Dungeons & Dragons. Yikes! Three of the players are “maybes” (they want to play Warmachine but the low #s makes it hard to do that week after week). The other 13 are all …

Zombie cards and my absence from the site

Hey folks!  To get some business out of the way, you won’t be seeing much of me on Troll in the Corner for a few weeks.  I’m set to go in to Surgery tomorrow and am expecting it to take a few weeks for me to recover.   That’s the not so good news. The good news is, late last night Eric dropped off …

Imagination Sells Two Games to Spin Master for 24M AUD

Australian board and DVD game company Imagination Game s has sold two of its games – Fact Or Crap and Battle of the Sexes – to burgeoning game and toy company Spin Master for $24 million Australian dollars (around $21.7 million USD). The reason for the sale, if it wasn’t already obvious, is to deal with some bank problems. ( source )

25 years later… 24 years later!

The nonsensical title to this posts is actually a reference to my first ever attempt at designing a game. From that attempt I learned that designing a game is hard, a mixture of creativity and perseverance. Almost like catching lightning in a bottle. If you’ll indulge me, let’s travel down memory lane to the year 1986, when I created my first game, 25 years later . I remember…